Free Trade Talks with Gulf Nations to Slash Tariffs on Food Exports

The United Kingdom is in negotiations with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to establish a free trade accord (FTA) that will add £1.6 billion each year to the economy.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan, the United Kingdom’s trade secretary, was in Riyadh for preliminary talks with Gulf Cooperation Council Secretary General Dr. Nayef Falah M. Al-Hajraf on a bilateral trade agreement.

The GCC, which includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), is comparable to the United Kingdom’s seventh largest export market.

The aim of the initiative is to encourage firms of all sizes in the United Kingdom to develop new food and beverage markets as well as assist small businesses that presently export to the region.

The government thinks a UK-GCC agreement would be beneficial to British farmers and manufacturers, because the Gulf nations are entirely reliant on imported food.

The aim of the government is to slash duties on items such as grains, chocolate, baking goods, cookies, and smoked salmon in order to boost agricultural exports to Gulf Cooperation Council nations. 

Last year’s figure was £625 million in food and drink sales to the GCC nations.

News Credits:  UK Opens Trade Negotiations with Gulf Region in Bid to Boost Food, Drink and Services Exports – Institute of Exports & International Trade

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